WSL Expands TV Partnership with CBS and Starts One with Bleacher Report
The World Surf League (WSL) has announced expanded and new national media partnerships for the 2018 season. CBS Sports will televise more than 40 hours of surfing coverage as the television partner across CBS and CBS Sports Network. Turner Sports’ B/R Live will distribute extensive live WSL coverage and become the league’s official destination for championship-caliber video on demand (VOD) content, replays, and highlights.
The coverage will begin with the WSL Founders’ Cup of Surfing presented by Michelob ULTRA Pure Gold event May 5-6.
The Founders’ Cup of Surfing presented by Michelob ULTRA Pure Gold event will be the first time the WSL Surf Ranch, powered by Kelly Slater Technology, opens its doors to the public. Five teams representing USA, Brazil, Australia, Europe and a World Team will compete over the two-day specialty event in Lemoore, Calif.
Nationally, fans will be able to view it via:
- CBS will broadcast live coverage onSaturday, May 5 from 11 a.m. – 12 p.m. PST, and an event highlight feature onSunday, May 13 from 2 p.m. – 3 p.m. PST
- May 5-6, B/R Live will live stream the entire event in the US athttps://live.com/
- WSL platforms will live stream the event globally
CBS Sports and WSL have renewed and expanded their partnership. For the first time, surfing will air live for four hours across the CBS broadcast network, beginning with The Founders’ Cup event and in September for the WSL Surf Ranch Open, a Championship Tour stop.
CBS Sports Network will air 20 hours of live coverage including the Vans US Open of Surfing (July 30 – August 5), Championship Tour stops and Big Wave Tour events. In addition to the live event coverage, CBS Sports Network will air 15 one-hour WSL specials throughout the year.
Turner Sports joins the WSL team as a media partner with B/R Live providing live coverage of the entire Founders’ Cup and additional WSL events throughout the season. B/R Live will also be the official destination for video on demand content, replays and highlights for WSL in the US.
“Our expanded national broadcast and live streaming platforms will help to showcase what our surf fans already know and love: surfing is an incredible sport that delivers excitement, athleticism, and engaging content,” said WSL Chief Executive Officer Sophie Goldschmidt. “We can’t wait to unveil the WSL Surf Ranch that produces the best man-made wave in history to a national audience for the first time.”
Founders’ Cup of Surfing presented by Michelob ULTRA Pure Gold
The WSL Surf Ranch facility powered by Kelly Slater Technology, revealed online to the public in December 2015, boasts the best man-made wave in history – a 700-yard, high-performance, bi-directional wave featuring barrel sections and maneuver sections. Primarily existing as a testing facility, the Lemoore site has spent the past two years dialing in the technology under the guidance of 11-time WSL Champion Kelly Slater (USA) and feedback from visiting WSL surfers. A private test event last September proved very successful, paving the way for the May Founders’ Cup of Surfing to be the first time the public will be allowed onto the grounds.
The Founders’ Cup of Surfing will see the men and women competing alongside one another in the team format, a first for WSL events that will add a new dimension to surf competition. The teams will be made up of three men and two women from each region (USA, Brazil, Australia, Europe and a World team).
About CBS Sports
CBS Sports, a year-round leader in television sports, broadcasts a portfolio of events on the CBS Television Network, including THE NFL ON CBS; college football, including the SEC ON CBS; college basketball, including the NCAA Division I Men’s Basketball Championship; golf, including The Masters®, PGA Championship and PGA TOUR; and CBS SPORTS SPECTACULAR. In addition, the division includes CBS SPORTS NETWORK, the 24-hour home of CBS Sports; produces INSIDE THE NFL for SHOWTIME; and partners with CBSSports.com in creating a recognized leader in the digital space.
About Turner Sports
Turner Sports, a division of Turner, is an industry leader in the delivery of premium sports content across all multimedia screens. Turner Sports’ television coverage includes the NBA, Major League Baseball, NCAA Division I Men’s Basketball Championship, ELEAGUE and professional golf, along with the UEFA Champions League and UEFA Europa League beginning in Summer 2018. The company also manages some of the most popular sports destinations across digital and social platforms including Bleacher Report and its top-rated app, NCAA.com and the critically-acclaimed NCAA March Madness Live suite of products, PGA.com and the Sports Emmy Award-winning PGA Championship LIVE, as well as an accompanying collection of mobile sites and connected device apps. Turner Sports and the NBA jointly manage NBA Digital, a robust collection of offerings including NBA TV, NBA.com, NBA LEAGUE PASS, the NBA App and NBAGLEAGUE.com. Turner Sports recently launched B/R Live, a premium live streaming sports platform that serves as the central hub for both the discovery and consumption of live sports content. The new streaming service allows fans to find and watch their favorite sports content anywhere, anytime and on the screen of their choice.
The World Surf League (WSL) is dedicated to celebrating the world’s best surfing on the world’s best waves through a variety of best-in-class audience platforms. The League, headquartered in Santa Monica, is a global sport with regional offices in Australasia, Africa, North America, South America, Hawaii, Japan and Europe.
The WSL has been championing the world’s best surfing since 1976, annually running in excess of 180 global events across the Men’s and Women’s Championship Tours, the Big Wave Tour, Qualifying Series, Junior and Longboard Championships, as well as the WSL Big Wave Awards. The League possesses a deep appreciation for the sport’s rich heritage while promoting progression, innovation and performance at the highest levels, and in doing so crowns the undisputed world champions in Men’s, Women’s across all divisions within the tour.
Showcasing the world’s best surfing on its digital platform at WorldSurfLeague.com as well as the free WSL app, the WSL has a passionate global fan base with millions tuning in to see world-class athletes like Tyler Wright, John John Florence, Paige Alms, Kai Lenny, Taylor Jensen, Honolua Blomfield, Mick Fanning, Stephanie Gilmore, Kelly Slater, Carissa Moore, Gabriel Medina, Courtney Conlogue and more battle on the most unpredictable and dynamic field of play of any sport in the world.
For more information, please visit WorldSurfLeague.com